By Sharon Schweitzer
Global Father’s Day Celebrations 20022
We hold an incredibly special place in our hearts for our fabulous fathers. As we celebrate Torrita di Siena donkey races to San Giuseppe feasts, we observe with intrigue as cultures worldwide celebrate father figures. U.S. Americans prepare to honor fathers, father-figures, and male role-models on Sunday, June 19, 2022, and we share the unique traditions of ten countries celebrating in different months:
Czech Republic: Father’s Day is a newer celebration in this nation, with the holiday’s growing popularity over the last decade credited to beer company Pilsner Urquell. Since 2011, this “fore-father” of Pilsner style beers has commemorated Father’s Day with special 1-liter bottles annually.
Finland: Finnish fathers have been honored on the second Sunday of November since the 1950s. An official flag-raising holiday, families participate in dad’s favorite activities, offering him home-made cards and gifts, and sharing messages of love and appreciation.
France: La Fête des Pères is observed on the third Sunday of June and gained popularity after an advertising campaign marketed lighters as the perfect gift. Today, the briquets are replaced by drawings or small gifts, and children spend the day showing dad they love him.
Germany: Father’s Day is observed on Ascension Day, the 40th day of Easter. Children offer special cards and gifts to their fathers. One unique German tradition includes family hikes, and picnics with dad’s favorite food and drink.
Italy: Italy celebrates St. Joseph’s Day, or San Giuseppe on March 19th. Celebrations include street parades, feasts of zeppole, frittelle, and bonfires with friends and family. In parts of Italy, towns hold donkey races as a symbol of Joseph leading Mary to Bethlehem on this creature.
Luxembourg: In this tiny country, fathers are important. While Father’s Day is not an official public holiday, that does not stop school children from making presents in class and learning the ‘Pappendag Song’: “Haut ass den daug /wou mir eise Pappen /alles Guddes wenschen / Geneisst et / a loostt eich feieren!” (Today is the day / where we are our fathers / wish you all the best / Enjoy it / and let me celebrate!)
Mexico: El Dia del Padre is celebrated on June’s third Sunday. Children honor their fathers by spending time doing dad’s favorite hobbies, gifting handwritten letters, or cooking meals. Many Mexicans walk or run the 21-kilometer race in Mexico City, the “Carrera Día del Padre 21K Bosque de Tlalpan” for unique bonding.
South Africa: Father’s Day is accompanied by a delectable indigenous feast of bobotie (a rich meat pie), biltong (salted, curated meat), and boerewors (grilled sausage). Families participate in street performances, games, sports tournaments, and concerts countrywide.
Spain: Celebrated on March 19, St. Joseph’s Day, honoring the saint’s fatherhood example. Children wake dad with homemade breakfast and spend a family day enjoying dad’s favorite activities. Kids or spouses give a toast or short speech about their beloved father figures.
Thailand: Fathers are worshiped on December 5, the birthday of beloved King Bhumibol Adulyadej. The Thai King annually addresses his citizens. Fathers and grandfathers are honored with Canna flowers.
Father’s Day is a wonderful opportunity to demonstrate to your father figures that they are appreciated and cherished. To all grandfathers, dads, uncles, and brothers who guide us and show us unconditional love, Happy Father’s Day!
Sharon Schweitzer, J.D., is a cross-cultural trainer, modern manners expert, and the founder of Access to Culture. In addition to her accreditation in intercultural management from the HOFSTEDE centre, she serves as a Chinese Ceremonial Dining Etiquette Specialist in the documentary series Confucius was a Foodie, on Nat Geo People. She is the resident etiquette expert on two popular lifestyle shows: ABC Tampa Bay’s Morning Blend and CBS Austin’s We Are Austin. She is regularly quoted by BBC Capital, Investor’s Business Daily, Fortune, and the National Business Journals. Her Amazon #1 Best Selling book in International Business, Access to Asia: Your Multicultural Business Guide, now in its third printing, was named to Kirkus Reviews’ Best Books of 2015. She’s a winner of the British Airways International Trade Award at the 2016 Greater Austin Business Awards.